Son's quilt, revisited

LibbyLizOctober 30, 2006

Okay, I've been busy this last week finishing my son's denim squares quilt.

I decided to give it a solid backing instead of corduroy squares.

Someone mentioned using a flat sheet?

Do I buy the highest thread count or will just any type do?

I realized it's going to be too heavy if I make it denim on one side & corduroy on the other, & it's going to take too much time & effort to cut out, I'm guessing, a couple hundred squares of corduroy.

I have decided to instead take apart portions of the denim quilt facing, removing squares that are thin & those that are the same color side-by-side, & maybe those that are dis or odd-colored, & replace them with cordoruy. This will be a feat in itself.

That'll be a lot easier than remaking the whole quilt or making another block quilt in all corduroy squares, which is what he wants in addition to a denim square quilt!!! He doesn't want much, does he?!

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fishies(Ottawa z4a or 5)

I've never quilted, but almost every other woman in my family does (they even have regular meetings, called a "Stitch and B**ch"). They all use flat sheets for the backing. I've got a number of the family handywork here, and the thread count doesn't look that high. I'd guess 200, maybe 250 on some of them. Certainly not those royalty 500 count sheets. And they always use old sheets. I've got one quilt that was made with a used sheet, again probably 200 or 250 count, and was initially given to my father when he remarried. That was 20+ years ago, and the quilt is still fabulous.


    Bookmark   October 30, 2006 at 4:06PM
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Hi Libby,

Well, I have made of all things a quilt not unlike what you are making. Instead of denim I made it out of corduroy squares. For the back and I just went out and bought a sheet. Nothing special, just something that was an appropriate color. I had the same dilemma. The back and had to be pretty light as the corduroy is pretty heavy stuff.

Here is a picture of my quilt if you are interested in seeing it:

    Bookmark   October 30, 2006 at 5:04PM
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fishies(Ottawa z4a or 5)

Larry... I detect no cacti under those grow lights. tsk tsk tsk.

Lovely quilt, though :)

    Bookmark   October 30, 2006 at 8:28PM
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Hold on Shelly. The cacti are in this window:

    Bookmark   October 31, 2006 at 12:10AM
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tisha_(z7 OKC)

LibbyLiz!!! Long time, no see!!! :-D

I have nothing to add here. I just wanted to say "HI!"

    Bookmark   October 31, 2006 at 12:39PM
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Hey Tisha! How you doin'? ;-)

By the way, for some time now I wanted to tell you my stylist's name is Tisha, pronounced Tee-sha.

Larry, nice job on the quilt! What a man! One who knows how to sew something more than patches & rank on a military uniform! :\-P 

Is the sheet/backing 100% cotton or cotton/poly blend? I'd like one that's 100% cotton so the front & back shrink & age at the same time during future washings & dryings. Or I fear the front will pucker & the back will be all gape\-y. 

How'd you keep the front & back together? I want to do the traditional "tie with yarn", but he doesn't want that. But if mom's making it, he gets what he gets!
    Bookmark   October 31, 2006 at 3:00PM
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tisha_(z7 OKC)

Keith and I used to be friends with a couple. The woman's name was spelled Tisha but pronounced Tee-sha too.

My Grandma's beautician's dog's name was Tisha... spelled and pronounced like my name. lol

    Bookmark   October 31, 2006 at 3:05PM
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Hi Libby,

Thanks! I really had a lot of fun making that quilt.

My dad taught me carpentry, how to do drywall and plastering, electrical work, plumbing and a little bit about motors. He also taught me a little bit of brick laying too, although I was never very good at it. My mother taught me cooking and sewing. I've been married twice and was always a better cook than my wives.

The backing sheet is a cotton/polyester blend. I washed all of the fabric before I cut and sewed the squares together so that it would not shrink after washing. Because of that I didn't worry about what kind of backing I had.

As far as keeping the front and back together I used the yarn and tie method. I agree, do it the way you want. As far as what your son wants. Beggars can't be choosers. Right? lol


PS - I also sewed a lot of patches and rank on my ex-wifes uniforms when she was in the Army too.

    Bookmark   October 31, 2006 at 8:45PM
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So you don't think the fabric will keep shrinking? I read that's what cotton (i.e. jeans) likes to do over time. I wash & dry everything too before cutting & sewing.

My cousin's dog's name is Sasha & my hubby's sister's girl is named Sasha too! LOL

    Bookmark   November 1, 2006 at 7:33PM
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Very nice Larry. I made a quilt like that for my son once. I used a a "cheaper" sheet that was a cotton blend. DH is really into fancy sheets. We have spent a fine chunk of change on 500 plus count cotton sheets and guess what....they get holes in them much quicker then the blend type. Why is that? But it is the bottom spendy sheet that does not hold up.

I really like the feel of 100% cotton. The first quilt I tied I wanted to use embroidery floss-big mistake as it came untied. I used 100%cotton yarn on my son"s which worked much better. Can you post a picture of your project

    Bookmark   November 1, 2006 at 9:56PM
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pirate_girl(Zone7 NYC)

Hi All,

Really nice job Larry, I'm nicely surprised to see corduroy comes in so many colors & in prints too. I don't see printed curduroy very often (saw my first in the early 80s when I was a textile designer & rarely since then). I liked them a lot.

I'm a quilter these days (for the last 12+ yrs). But after the 1st couple of test quilts (small) I only work in all cotton. Have never made a tied one, mine are all machine pieced, machine quilted & have bindings around the edges, which are initially attached by machine, but then turned under & hand-stitched. I've never made a bed size quilt (yet) have one in progress for the last few yrs.

I haven't washed any of my quilts (they hang on the walls like art, rather than on the bed). I explain all this to lead into discussing the blends & the backing. My general impression after textile school is that if one washes everything before cutting & sewing, washed in HOT & dried in HOT that SHOULD put an end to the shrinkage.

I caution that I have not actually tried this, this is theoretical knowledge only. My understanding is that the shrinkage is really much more from the drier than the washer.

Also, (Hi Libby, long time ...), if you're gonna do more quilting (esp. that dealts in cut squares or rectangles) you might want to invest in rotary cutter (sort of a pizza cutter for fabrics). Saves a great deal of time in the cutting process & if one irons & smoothes out the layers of fabrics very carefully, one can cut multiple layers of fabrics (or patches) at once. These rotary cutters are very sharp & are best used w/ special (specifically made for this) cutting boards underneath. Protects both the underlying furnitures & the cutting blade.

Hoping you find this helpful,

(PG) Karen

    Bookmark   November 1, 2006 at 11:52PM
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I have a rotary cutter with an extra blade & a blade sharpener. I love those things! I just bought another self-sealing mat (Quilting Mate by June Tailor) since I cut through the first one (gray with orange - Fiskars?) & caught the mistake before it did too much damage to the dining table hubby just made a new top for! Thank goodness for "crayons" & a blow dryer!

I can't remember if the denim was washed & dried on hot/high.

I saw many types of printed corduroy at Joann's & Hancock's the other day when out looking for burgundy or maroon, olive, cream, & goldenrod corduroy. I came home with burgundy, olive, light-bright moss, & ivory, but no goldenrod. :-(

    Bookmark   November 2, 2006 at 9:38PM
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pirate_girl(Zone7 NYC)

Hi Libby,

Oh thanks for the corduroy color tips, maybe some day ... Frankly, I'd just like it if someone would make printed corduroy womens pants for winter, I'd love that.

Yeah, glad to hear you already know abt rotary cutters, I held out for as long time (finances), but finally gave in & bought Olfa (ergonomic cutter, after trying a cheapy) & their mat (green & yellow). The combination just rock, made my quilting sooooo much faster!

    Bookmark   November 3, 2006 at 1:12AM
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By the way, I have two more questions if folks would care to give their opinions:

Shams or no shams? -- Hubby & I rarely use ours. Someone here mentioned last year that the seams might be too bumpy & that if I made some, I should line them, which I don't want to be bothered with.

Black or brown backing? -- There are three different colors of black denim mixed in with the blue. One of those blacks is faded to a dark gray.

    Bookmark   November 6, 2006 at 12:21AM
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